The Flash Review – “Things You Can’t Outrun” S1E3

So episode three of The Flash, “Things You Can’t Outrun” aired last night. First off let me preface this by saying I’m legitimately enjoying this show. Barry is a delightful character and there is a decent supporting cast. The setting is a little shallow though. We’re never really given a feel for Central City. Unlike comparable shows like Gotham and Arrow where we know a lot about their respectable locations, Central City feels sterile and boring. Obviously this is only the third episode so there is plenty of time for that to change.

Don't worry these other characters are just a bad dream.
Don’t worry. These other characters are just a bad dream.

Grant Gustin, or as I like to call him, American Andrew Garfield, is delightful. He’s quirky and fun and plays the role well. In this episode, we see Barry, like most superheroes eventually, question themselves and how much they can do. The old adage of “You can’t save everyone” comes up as a big focal point this week, and not just for Barry. I’m hoping this trope won’t stick around too long. Sometimes the world’s fastest man just isn’t fast enough. When Gustin says “I should have been faster” you do feel for him. He really is a very strong part of the series. This episode made me root for him a little harder.

The big bad this week is The Mist, whom as far as I can tell has never fought The Flash before, and is kind of obscure. If you know Starman, you might have heard of The Mist, but if you’re like me this is your first encounter with him. I like him, he’s kind of a tragic character, too. So Kyle Nimbus was a prisoner being executed the night of the particle accelerator mishap. He is put to death via the gas chamber and his meta human ability is to transform into poisonous gas. So he has to spend his life being forever connected to the very thing that killed him. He uses this ability to take out people responsible for him winding up in jail.

FLA103c_0201b
Detective Joe West hurts on the outside and the inside.

My favorite part of this episode, and probably the best character who’s not Barry, Is Jessie L. Martin as Detective Joe Martin. He finally comes to terms about wrongfully imprisoning Barry’s father. He relives the police interrogation where Henry Allen is calling out to Joe for help. Later on, he visits Henry in prison in an effort to reach out to him. His portrayal is heartfelt and real. Martin brings some very much appreciated real emotion to the show.

FLA103a_0190b
No one cares about your story.

For me, the weak point of the show is the STAR Labs employees, which sadly includes Tom Cavanagh. They are droll and not very compelling. We get a little background on Caitlins’ fiance, which fails to add any real depth to her character or make me care about her. Cisco is still basically comic relief, but they tried to open him up a little bit this episode. He was there when Caitlins’ fiancé died; he’s actually the one who closed the door behind him. The ever evil Harrison Wells, played by the usually good Cavanagh is really bringing up the rear. They showed that he has been on the up and up since the end of the first episode and that trend continues here with us finding out that he knew about Barry Allen even before Barry was The Flash. As they say, the plot thickens, but still not really.

  • Where does Barry shop? Personally, I wouldn’t wear The Flash costume if my clothes stayed together at supersonic speeds.
  • Caitlin’s fiancé is not going to be so dead, and will be a meta human, calling it now.
  • Harrison Wells may be centuries old if the little hint they give in the flashback mean anything. Maybe he knew exactly what he was doing and is trying to create more meta humans.
  • And for that matter I don’t completely trust Cisco.
  • 50/50 chance of either Iris dying or her boyfriend. One is a little more compelling than the other.
  • If The Mist can transform faster than Barry can punch him, does that me he’s super fast too?
  • Finally, one meta human they haven’t killed!

Hush Comics gives The Flash “Things You Can’t Outrun” a B. Lead by a few strong characters The Flash is quickly becoming one of my favorite shows. Grant Gustin is very likable and relatable. There were a few snags with poorly written side characters. The bad guys are interesting but still fairly shallow, and so far they’ve been one hit wonders. I’m waiting for a little more intriguing plot, but it’s still early and there is lots of time.

 

Easter Egg Hunt (spoilers ahead)

The Flash Museum: It’s not like Barry Allen would ever be so braggadocios as to need a museum as a tribute to himself. Oh wait, yes he does. As a tribute to the Fastest Man Alive, Central City has built a museum in his honor. The museum, which has been destroyed multiple times in its nearly fifty year history, is full of memorabilia from encounters with Flash’s rogues gallery and a working Cosmic Treadmill – it’s basically a big “F U” to his enemies.

Metahuman prison: The idea of building special facilities to house metahumans is not a new one. Since we know that gathering them in the bottom of the abandoned particle accelerator can only spell certain doom for our team, there’s a good chance that these metahumans will be relocated sooner or later. Our guess is that this will most likely be to Belle Reve, which despite its country club-sounding name, is the prison that holds The Suicide Squad, whose members (Deadshot, Harley Quinn, etc) have made appearances in the CW-verse. There’s a good chance that the bad guys that don’t manage to end up splattered on the ground or shot at will end up coming back in one facet or another.

Speaking of DOOM…: When Barry is busy friend-zoning it up with Iris at the movie theater, the marquee has a distinct message for viewers. One of the movies reads The Rita Farr Story, named appropriately after the DOOM Patrol’s Elasti-Girl, the mentally-fragile former stunt-woman. Another stuntman in his days is the Blue Devil, referenced here by the film Blue Devil II: Hell to Pay.

Fire & Ice: While this reference was just sly enough not to be cheesy, I couldn’t help giggle at Caitlin’s mention of her and Ronnie Raymond (played by RoBBie Amell, the Arrow’s cousin) reacting like “fire and ice.” Each episode gets us closer and closer to the emergence of FireStorm, and perhaps the downfall of Killer Frost. Only time will tell.

Cisco, the resident DC Historian: By now, Cisco Ramon not only makes all the toys, but he seems to name all the bad guys, too. The guy has a knack for naming these totally crazy bad guys after comic book characters all over the DCU. Call it a gift, but Cisco seems to find the perfect name for all the metahumans that Barry runs across. It not only adds to his charm, but makes it cool to know just a little too much about comic books. First appearing in the 1940’s (Adventure Comics #67), Kyle Nimbus (ha… Nimbus) has the power to turn into any gaseous form, reminding us of a very important lesson – never trust Canadians.

 

 

Published by

Scott McCauliffe

My name Scott McCauliffe and I'm a nerd. I love comics, games, movies, toys, you name it and I'm a fan. Except LARPing, sorry guys, I just don't get it. I'm a graphic designer by trade and I work at a nice local newspaper, laying out a few of the pages. I'm very happily married to my wife and we have a beautiful little boy and another little one on the way. I like to write in my spare time and I also create posters and t-shirts that I sell online. Back in 2010 I wrote my own comic book and attended the inaugural Denver Comic Con with it in artist alley. That was exciting. I'm also writing a little bit of science fiction right now. I'm also an avid gamer, both video and table top. I love playing Pathfinder (D&D 3.5) with my friends and family. Many monsters know the fear of Welby Goodbarrel, halfling alchemist. I have a pretty nice action figure collection going. It's mostly Star Wars and Marvel, with some Batman mixed in for good measure. I'm kind of an all over the place guy, never really focused in on one thing I like to be deep in it all. And I accept any trivia challenges!

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